A Great Start to a Weird Year

I can't believe it has only been a month since I last wrote one of these. It seems like so much has happened in such a short amount of time. If I had to say there was a theme for this last month, it would be that the Lord shows up in the unexpected. We really had no idea how this year would go. With so many classes being online and many students staying home for the semester, we really were hoping to just stay afloat. We started this year thinking it would be challenging and that our ministry, like many churches, would shrink during this time. But instead God decided to remind us that He is one who works by taking us through the storm, not out of it. I am so happy to say that our ministry has actually grown this year! We have more students involved in Focus up in Denton than I think we've ever had before. What an absolute blessing in such a time of uncertainty.

Lets jump back a couple weeks. School just started and students were showing up on campus for the first time. The school had banned any organizations from doing events on campus, and they themselves were not putting on any in person events. In a typical year events are a major way we would meet new students. So we had to get creative, and most importantly get over ourselves. Because while they can ban events, they can't ban Christians from going out and befriending students on campus. Our leaders showed up in droves and met so many students one on one, whether that be in the dining halls, in the Union, or playing frisbee on the lawn. On most days it was hard to find someone sitting in the Union that wasn't already talking to one of our leaders. We played games on the lawn in the evenings and we started drawing a decent crowd. Students were so eager to make friends after this time of isolation. Plus we saw a trend of many students being more interested in exploring their relationship with God than in an average year. Overall welcome week was a huge success for us!

The momentum has kept up, with our Cores (small groups) getting off to a great start. With the way our ministry looks this year it allows our student leaders to spend more 1x1 time with the people in their Cores, which is helping bond those groups together better than ever. God has shown up in such huge ways this year already, and really we've just begun. Personally my Core and peer team have been so encouraging. We're having a bunch of new guys come to my Core who are all eager to get to know Christ which is super exciting. Then in my peer team I have such a solid group of young leaders. They are always taking the initiative, coming with great questions, and are truly doing real and valuable ministry. With both of these groups I've seen the Lord opening the door for me to minister to them in really neat ways. I've felt like the Lord has let me have some really meaningful moments with all of my guys where I've been able to speak the truth of Christ into their lives in an impactful way. I am just so thankful for all He has been doing so far, and I have very high hopes for the coming months. 

Prayer Requests:

Pray that this great start of the year keeps going

Pray for our continued outreach efforts

Pray for all college students to find hope and a community to join


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